The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) provides scientific and technical advice to support government decision makers during emergencies.
SAGE is responsible for ensuring that timely and coordinated scientific advice is made available to decision makers to support UK cross-government decisions in the Cabinet Office Briefing Room (COBR). The advice provided by SAGE does not represent official government policy.
SAGE relies on external science advice and on advice from expert groups. During COVID-19 this includes the:
- New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG)
- Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling (SPI-M) (Department for Health and Social Care)
- Independent Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Behaviours (SPI-B)
These groups consider the scientific evidence and feed in their consensus conclusions to SAGE.
Scientific evidence supporting the government response to COVID-19
The national and global response to the spread of COVID-19 continues to develop quickly and our knowledge of the virus is growing. These statements and accompanying evidence demonstrate how our understanding of COVID-19 has evolved as new data has emerged.
This page will be updated on a regular basis with the latest available evidence provided to SAGE.
Introduction to the evidence
Current understanding of COVID-19
Behavioural and social interventions
Self-isolation and household isolation
Emerging evidence about COVID-19
- Emergence of a novel coronavirus (COVID-19); A protocol for extending surveillance used by the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) Research and Surveillance Centre (RSC) and Public Health England (PHE)
- Early dynamics of transmission and control of COVID-19: a mathematical modelling study
- Inferring the number of COVID-19 cases from recently reported deaths
- Feasibility of controlling COVID-19 outbreaks by isolation of cases and contacts
- Estimates of the severity of COVID-19 disease
- Novel coronavirus 2019-nCoV: early estimation of epidemiological parameters and epidemic predictions
- Estimation of country-level basic reproductive ratios for novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) using synthetic contact matrices
- A spatial model of COVID-19 transmission in England and Wales: early spread and peak timing
- The efficacy of contact tracing for the containment of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
Reports from Imperial College London
- Epidemic size estimation in Wuhan City
- Epidemic size estimation in Wuhan City - update
- Transmissibility of COVID-19
- Severity of COVID-19
- Phylogenetic analysis of SARS-CoV-2
- Relative sensitivity of international surveillance
- Infection prevalence estimated from repatriation flights
- Symptom progression of COVID-19